Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has selected Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) to serve as the co-chair of the bipartisan fiscal committee that will meet later this year.
Charged with cutting $1.5 trillion from the federal deficit, Reid will also tap Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) and Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) for the “Super Committee.”
Congressional leaders have until August 16 to decide who will serve on the committee, which must report its recommendations to Congress by November 23.
Reid said last week he would only appoint members who are not “locked-in” to any positions, adding he hopes for a compromise including substantial spending cuts, but including new revenues.
Republicans have indicated they would not appoint any lawmakers who support increasing taxes.
Reid’s full statement is below:
“The Joint Select Committee has been charged with forging the balanced, bipartisan approach to deficit reduction that the American people, the markets and rating agencies like Standard and Poor’s are demanding. To achieve that goal, I have appointed three senators who each posses an expertise in budget matters, a commitment to a balanced approach and a track record of forging bipartisan consensus.
“I have great faith in Senator Murray as the co-chair of the committee. Her years of experience on the Senate Budget and Appropriations committees have given her a depth of knowledge on budget issues, and demonstrated her ability to work across party lines. Senators Baucus and Kerry are two of the Senate’s most respected and experienced legislators. Their legislative accomplishments are matched only by their records of forging strong bonds with their Republican colleagues.
“As the events of the past week have made clear, the world is watching the work of this committee. I am confident that Senators Murray, Baucus and Kerry will bring the thoughtfulness, bipartisanship, and commitment to a balanced approach that will produce the best outcome for the American people.”